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Sean D. Reyes
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AG Reyes Stands for American National Security

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH – Attorney General Sean D. Reyes joined 17 state attorneys general in opposing the White House’s recent decision to defer removing Palestinians from the United States.

Earlier this year, President Biden ordered the Department of Homeland Security to stop removing Palestinians subject to removal orders. The President purportedly ordered the deferral due to “humanitarian conditions in the Palestinian territories hav[ing] significantly deteriorated.” His order notably came after many of the same States asked DHS to “vigorously renew vetting of foreign-student visa holders and to promptly remove anyone who has endorsed or espoused terrorist activity or provided material support to foreign terrorist organizations.”

The efforts from state attorneys general follow weeks of chaotic and sometimes illegal demonstrations on college campuses and elsewhere by individuals supporting Hamas in its war against Israel. Many of these occurrences have been spearheaded by Students for Justice in Palestine, which has ties to Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The U.S. Department of State has marked those groups as “foreign terrorist organizations.”

In this latest letter, the attorneys general argue that the President’s order is lawless and must be reversed. They urge that “Congress – not the President – has ‘plenary power to make rules for the admission of aliens and to exclude those who possess those characteristics which Congress has forbidden.’” The States add that “previously admitted foreign students attending American universities who endorse or espouse terrorist activities or support terrorist organizations such as Hamas are in violation of federal law and deportable for engaging in ‘terrorist activities.’”

Joining Utah and Arkansas were the States of Alabama, Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Read the letter here.